BSc (Hons) Countryside Management (Top-up)




Royal Agricultural University Campus


1 Year (Full-time/Part-time)

Academic Year

25 September 2023 to 24 May 2024

Whether you already work in this sector or you aspire to, you will advance your environmental and landscape knowledge and gain the necessary skills and understanding to make informed and effective countryside management decisions.

Course overview

You will study a core module in countryside management, complete a research project, and choose five elective modules tailored to your interests and career aspirations. There is flexibility built into the course meaning that part-time students in employment can complete a work-based research project and reduce the time required for campus-based modules. 

You will also have the opportunity to undertake research field trips, with previous destinations including Costa Rica for ecology and Orkney to explore heritage. This will incur an additional cost.

Graduates have gone on to work at nationally-recognised organisations such as Natural England, Historic England, The National Trust and The Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group.

Industry experience

You will benefit from the numerous links with colleagues who work in the countryside sector, both through field visits and visiting guest lecturers. Your research project will give you great opportunities to work directly with industry partners. Previous examples have considered how to manage habitats at the landscape scale for adders and how to protect vulnerable sites through use of appropriate signage.

Course content

We are currently finalising the information for courses offered for 2023 entry. Full details and programme specifications will be available in early 2023. You will study a core module in countryside management and complete a Research Project. You will also choose five elective modules, tailoring these to your interests and career aspirations. The course will be delivered through a series of lectures, seminars and group projects. This is further enhanced through field visits hosted by environmental organisations and land managers working within the countryside sector. Modules are assessed through a range of techniques including research projects, examinations, presentations and case studies. If the elective Ecology Study Tour is selected, there will be a student contribution of up to £1,000 and an institutional contribution of up to £1,000.


Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week. Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and societies activities.


All full-time academic programmes at the RAU are constructed using a selection of modules, each of which requires engagement with a variety of learning activities. Successful completion of module assessments will result in the award of credits, and students are required to achieve a total of 120 credits. Part-time students are required to achieve a 60 credits per year over two years.

Each module represents a value of 15 credits or multiples thereof. Each 15-credit module represents a minimum of 150 hours of student learning, effort and assessment. To achieve the award of BSc (Hons) in Countryside Management, a student must achieve a minimum of 120 credits. For this BSc (Hons) Top-up course, your grade is calculated entirely on this course's modules. 

The modules available for this degree are shown below. They may change for your year of study as we regularly review our module offerings to ensure they’re informed by the latest research and teaching methods.


  • 3092 Countryside & Environmental Management 
  • 3300 Research Project / Dissertation

Elective modules – choice of FIVE electives selected from:

  • 3080 Heritage Property
  • 3085 Climate Change and Development
  • 3090 Forestry and Woodland Management
  • 3093 Farmland Ecology
  • 3207 Farming and Integrated Environmental Local Delivery (FIELD)
  • 3230 Ecology Study Tour
  • 3325 Rural Entrepreneurship

The availability of electives to individual students will be dependent on timetabling considerations and on sufficient students electing to take part.

Disclaimer information

The University has established various rules and regulations that you must agree to and follow if you accept an offer to study with us. View our full disclaimer notice.

Read More

Careers and graduate destinations

Our graduates have gone on to pursue careers with nationally-recognised organisations and in roles such as:​
  • Research manager
  • Estate manager
  • Archaeological consultant
  • Ecological consultant/surveyor
  • Conservation/biodiversity officer
  • Agri-envrionment manager

"The Countryside Management Programme is an excellent option for students looking to tailor their studies to meet their own goals and career aspirations. The breadth of modules has allowed me to learn more about estate management underpinned by current environmental issues and considerations."

James Lighton, Student

Read More

Entry requirements

Typical offers

  • A foundation degree or an HND award in a related subject, achieving 240 credits overall and gained in the last five years
  • GCSE: no specific English and Mathematics requirements

Flexible entry

The University welcomes interest from applicants who may not have the standard entry requirements. A wide range of qualifications and experience are accepted in order to join University degree programmes. The University always considers evidence of personal, professional (APL) and educational experience, (APEL), which show an ability to meet the demands of their intended programme of study.

Further information

Read more general information about our entry requirements.

International students will also need to achieve IELTS Academic or equivalent at the appropriate level for your programme of study. English language requirements for international students.

For any further help, please contact our admissions team:  

Read More


Tuition fees cover the cost of a student’s academic studies. This usually includes teaching costs, registration and examination fees (not repeat or trailing modules, re-sit fees or coursework resubmission). Any costs associated with work placements will be the student's responsibility.

2023-24 Applicants

For the academic year 2023-24 the tuition fees for this course are: 

  UK International
Full-time £9,250 per year £13,900 per year

For part-time study, please contact for further information.

Please also refer to the funding your time at university page.

Tuition fees may be subject to an inflationary increase each year as set out in our Access and Participation Plan 2019/20.

If you are an Irish national you can check if you meet the requirements for Home Fees. Please visit the UKCISA website and consult the pdf guide “England HE – who pays Home Fees”. First check category ‘3 years in Republic of Ireland/UK/Islands, settled in UK’ or ‘Brexit temporary offer for courses starting before 2028: Irish citizens with residence in Europe or overseas territories’. You will possibly need to be fee assessed when you submit an application for study to the RAU.


The University offers a wide range of generous fee waivers and bursaries. To find out more about the these, please visit the bursaries, awards and scholarships page.

Read More

Ready to take the plunge? Apply now

Applications to study at the Royal Agricultural University must be made through the UCAS system. This applies to all undergraduate courses.

Applications should be made by the UCAS deadline to ensure we are able to offer you a place on your first choice course. However, if you have missed the deadline please contact as there are usually places available.

If you would like to apply during UCAS Extra or Clearing, please check that we have places available.

Applicants wishing to study on a course on a part-time basis will need to apply directly to the RAU.

Please contact to discuss your requirements and obtain an application form.